Finding a gigantic swarm of bees have set up home in a loft, garden, or even in a trash can, is a cause for concern for many homeowners in America.
Removing the insects typically involves a beekeeper – usually wearing heavy-duty protective gear.
But Erika Thompson is breaking that mold and telling amazing stories on TikTok.
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Her videos of bee removals – using her bare hands – have now led to her having more than 10 million followers, and her videos have been watched more than 100 million times.
Her job sees her remove the bees from people’s homes and rehome them at hives in her own garden.
The videos show her using her bare hands to remove the insects and
She told Vice: “The removals that went viral, those are some cases where I’m not wearing gear.
“But, you know, there are other cases where I am wearing gear.
“One of the things you don’t see, maybe, in the one-minute TikTok videos—I’m in Texas, and it’s incredibly hot.
“Sometimes these removals take 30 minutes; sometimes they take three hours or more.
“Beekeeping gear in general, it’s big, and it’s bulky… It makes it a little bit more difficult to work with these tiny creatures who are very delicate.”
However, her methods have not gone down well with some people in the traditional beekeeping community, who have accused her of faking the rescues and even getting her husband to do the hard work.
But these rumors have been dispelled as mostly sour grapes and even misogyny.
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Erika is by no means the only online beekeeper to rescue bees without protective equipment.
The technique is based on understanding the animals and being gentle with them.
It is not advised unskilled people try to remove bees with their bare hands – leave it to the experts!
Find her account here and her website here.
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